Russian ex-deputy minister Aleksashenko detained in airport, released, then case on cultural valuables smuggling opened against him – source

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

MOSCOW. Aug 23 (Interfax) – A criminal case on charges of smuggling of cultural valuables was opened against Sergei Aleksashenko, a former Russian deputy finance minister turned public figure, a source in law enforcement structures told Interfax.

“Aleksashenko was detained in a Moscow airport, where several orders of the Soviet era, prohibited to be exported, were seized from him,” the source said.

Following the opening of the criminal case, Aleksashenko was released and “he flew to this destination, the United States,” the source said.

Interfax has yet to obtain official confirmation of this information.

Another source clarified that an incident happened in Domodedovo airport a week ago. “Orders seized from the official had been sent for an expert evaluation, following which a criminal case was opened on August 23,” the source said.

Aleksashenko is an economist, the head of the Development Center analytical group. He had served as a Russian deputy finance minister in 1993-1995. He was the first deputy chairman of the Central Bank of Russia from December 1995 to September 1998. Aleksashenko resigned in September 1998.